Two events are scheduled in Little Rock for Thursday, September 14 as part of the Victory Over Violence campaign from KARK and Fox 16.
1) At 7 p.m., Philander Smith College will host a forum to "discuss the path to combating gang violence in the city," followed by an audience Q&A. Panelists will be Tristan Wilkerson, Black Male Initiative Coordinator and Social Justice Institute at Philander Smith College; Little Rock Police chief Kenton Buckner; Democratic state Senator Joyce Elliott; and Leifel Jackson, a motivational speaker and former gang member who now mentors youth. (The Arkansas Times spoke with Jackson in 2015 for our oral history of gang violence in 1990s Little Rock.) Fox 16 anchor Kevin Kelly will moderate.
The discussion is cosponsored by the Huffington Post
, as part of its "Listen to America" bus tour.
The HuffPo bus will be stationed at the Clinton Library from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Thursday
2) Earlier that day, Victory Over Violence is holding a noon luncheon at St. Mark Baptist Church
for pastors or other representatives from churches around Central Arkansas. RSVPs are requested by Tuesday at 5 p.m. The group says:
Victory Over Violence is asking that pastors or a representative from each church attend the meeting. The goal of the luncheon will be to collaborate, share resources, showcase best practices, and discuss concrete ways congregations can get involved in anti-violence initiatives.
"Our churches have always been a force for change in the community," said Victory Over Violence co-founder Austin Kellerman. "We're at a point where we need that force to help improve the lives of people across Little Rock. If we're going to tackle this problem, we need people of faith to lead the way and put 'love of neighbor' in action."
Victory Over Violence is asking for the public's help to ensure the invitation reaches all Little Rock-area churches. If you attend a church, Victory of Violence asks you to please forward this message to your pastor or church office.
The meeting and luncheon will begin around noon and last no longer than an hour.
Pastors or church representatives are asked to RSVP before 5pm Tuesday to Stephanie Jackson at email@example.com.